*click for larger
Here’s an image of the old false teeth factory that used to be at the top end of Celtic Road, Meols. The image is a scan of a photo in the late Jim O’Neil’s book West Kirby to Hoylake that is now out of print. I used to live in one of the old houses in Celtic Road but never had a clue about the gnashers!
It would seem that the false teeth business was popular in Meols and Hoylake, with factories having been present in Celtic Road, Chapel Road and Trinity Road. Perhaps factories is a little misleading …workshops is maybe a better description? It strikes me as unusual that there were three local sites producing false teeth. I’ve had a bit of an online search but not managed to find out any more about these businesses. If anyone knows any more feel free to leave a comment.
I’ve copied some of the comments below from the recent photo of Gibson’s Stores.
Syd Bird comments:
During the late 40`s and early 50`s the Rigby family also operated a Tooth Factory in Chapel Road ,this was situated between Nos 3 and 5. I lived at No.5 so the factory was right next to our house. After it closed Joe Royden took over the premises for his construction business. Jackie Hall confirms this and adds: “They also had a factory at the bottom on Trinity Road where the garage is now. Brian Rigby and John Rigby inherited the firm from their Dad”
Bernie Watts writes:
Regarding the tooth factory, my mother worked there and I can recall her one day bringing home boxes filled with brand new, shiny, individual teeth. I guess her job was to sort them into various sizes, box them and return them to the factory.
I do recollect that one day she had gone out and the temptation to look inside the boxes was too much for a five year old and the next thing I remember was playing with them.
The boxes were about 8 inches by 6 inches by 1 inch high, with a slide on top, in the middle of the lids on either side were half-moon cut outs to enable ease when opening the boxes. Well these lids were absolutely perfect for filling with teeth and dragging along the table top, the individual teeth exiting through the half-moons thereby leaving long trails of teeth which in a small boys imagination quickly became roads and highways leading all over the world. It was a great game, there were long trails short trails windy trails and overall tremendous fun, at least until mum came home and discovered that all of her previous sorting work was for naught as I had mixed all of the teeth up and put them back into one box.
I didn’t do that again, although she subsequently did let us play with them, as long as they were unsorted.
Now one thing I am a bit confused about, after all 60 odd years is a long time to remember, but I thought the factory was in Chapel Road?
Pat Ireland, another former resident of Celtic Road commented:
After we moved in [Celtic Road] we decided to make some changes to the back garden and had a patio laid and when the ground was being prepared my lovely 11 year old son would “mess” about in the soil and mud doing what 11 year old do in such a situation and he collected a bag full of what I thought were muddy stones but on further inspection it was a bag of individual false teeth. They were revolting but he thought it was hilarious – for years afterwards when the soil was turned over these white “stones” kept coming to the surface.
Helen Carr comments:
My husband pulled down the Tooth Factory in Celtic Road Meols; his firm was called Lazonby and Carr. Unfortunately he did not take any photo’s of the building. He found so many bags of teeth he threatened to bring them home and pebble dash the house with them!